5 statistics on the effectiveness of vaccines against Covid-19 skeptically proof

5 statistics on the effectiveness of vaccines against Covid-19 skeptically proof

Five indicators show the important impact of the vaccination campaign in containing the coronavirus pandemic. Useful data to overcome the hesitation of some segments of the population

(photo: Unsplash) It is scientifically known that vaccines against Covid-19 work, especially in preventing serious cases of the disease, hospitalizations and deaths. According to the data held by the Higher Institute of Health, in particular, the complete double-dose vaccination cycle prevents - taking an average of the age groups - 94% hospitalization, hospitalization in intensive care at 97% and the fatal outcome of the disease at 96%. And the protection from infection is also very high, estimated at 88%. Numbers which, as for any vaccine, cannot reach 100%, but which are quite close, especially for what really makes a difference in terms of public health.

Beyond these percentages, which remain certainly the simplest and most direct way to quantify the effectiveness of vaccination, today there are other data and indicators that give account of the concrete and tangible effect of the vaccination campaign. We have chosen five, all based on Italian data, to show with as many different approaches how the effect of vaccines is clearly appreciable even today, with just under 50% of the population having completed the cycle of administration.

All this does not mean that vaccines will lead to a zeroing of serious cases, or even less to the end of the pandemic, but it makes it clear that the vaccination campaign is making an important contribution in overcoming the health emergency. It being understood that even those who are vaccinated should continue to pay great attention not to be infected and not to transmit the virus to others.

1. Fewer and fewer severe cases than infections

As already mentioned, the main effect of vaccinations is to reduce the number of serious Covid-19 cases, i.e. such as to require a hospitalization or intensive care, or to cause the patient's death. And in this sense, the effect of the vaccination campaign is perceived by looking at the relationship between people hospitalized and active cases (ie people who are currently positive). We currently have 1,512 people hospitalized with symptoms and 182 in intensive care, out of a total of 68,236 positive cases. That is to say, a hospital admission rate of 2.2% and an intensive admission rate of 0.27%.

The same parameters calculated two months ago (268 thousand active cases) were respectively 3% and 0, 48%, at the beginning of this year (575 thousand active cases) were 4% and 0.44%, and at the beginning of October 2020 (52 thousand active cases) were 5.89% and 0.55%. A year ago, when intensive care was essentially empty with just forty people, the hospital admissions rate was still 5.88% (735 hospitalized out of 12,500 active cases). In short, compared to positive cases we have never had so few people in hospital and the same goes for intensive care.

2. The average age of deaths is decreasing

To understand what the effect of vaccination has to do with the average age of deceased people, it is necessary to take into account that the administrations are not proceeding uniformly for all ages, but that at the moment it is still very biased towards people of more advanced categories. The over 80s are covered at 90%, the seventies at 83%, the sixties at 72%, the fifties at 65%, the forties at 51% and so on.

What you would expect from a effective vaccination campaign, in practice, is that proportionally fewer elderly people die than young people, therefore that the average age of death decreases gradually. Well, that's exactly what's happening. From the first week of February onwards the average age of positive deceased patients has been continuously decreasing, going from 81.77 years to 79.71 in the first week of March, then to 78.74 at the beginning of April to 76.66 years. early May. Currently, with some fluctuations from week to week, we are around 75 years old.

The decrease in the average age of deaths, however, is accompanied by a decrease in other parameters, such as the average age of hospitalized and patients admitted to intensive care. And the average age of positive people has also dropped considerably, arriving in July for the first time under the age of 50.

3. Hospitalizations among vaccinated people are much less

Of course in this case it makes no sense to look at the absolute numbers, but at the ratios. Also because, in an ideal situation in which 100% of people are vaccinated, all hospitalizations would be vaccinated. The numbers in this case speak for themselves. Let's take those over eighty, who at the beginning of July were covered by the 85% double dose. According to national data, from mid-June to mid-July, 15% of unvaccinated people corresponded to 71% of hospitalized patients (54% if only the new hospitalized in the month are counted) and 69% of deaths. In short, while representing a very small slice of the over 80s, the unvaccinated are the majority of people of that age who end up in hospital with Covid-19.

As the weeks go by and the vaccination campaign progresses it goes without saying that the unvaccinated may no longer be the absolute majority. This is a very trivial statistical consideration, but to avoid confusion on this point, the journalistic name of “paradox” of the vaccinated audience has been coined. Even though the majority of hospitalized patients are vaccinated, this does not at all mean that the vaccine is not very effective.

4. The collapse of deaths among doctors

First to receive the vaccine. together with other health professionals, doctors are also the category in which the positive effects of the administration have been highlighted first. In the first year of the pandemic, from February 2020 to January 2021, the sad count of doctors who died from Covid-19 exceeded 300. Today, six months later, we are at 359.

In short, it can be said that the vaccination campaign coincided with a sharp slowdown in deaths among doctors, all the more so considering that the months of February and March (in which the vaccination campaign of health workers was nearing completion) corresponded to a further fifty deaths, only to be almost completely stopped by the arrival of spring.

5. Il Sars-Cov-2 appears less lethal

We have already reiterated it: compared to the total number of positive cases recorded, all indicators of serious disease are decreasing. A rather net decrease, such as to be reflected in an appreciable way also in the variation in the overall average lethality of Covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic. According to 2020 data, in fact, the viral infection had an average lethality of 3.4%, while at the beginning of March the overall average had dropped to 3.3% and at the beginning of May it had dropped further to 3%.

In the last two months the overall figure has remained stable at 3%, also because the number of new cases has been too low to significantly shift the general average. In fact, if we consider the period from 1 April to today, the average lethality has dropped to 2.54% (713 thousand cases corresponding to 18 thousand deaths), and in the last month to 0.81% (63 thousand cases and 513 deaths).

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